WASHINGTON – President Obama delivered his 2014 State of the Union address on Tuesday night and during the speech, he said he would act on his own, if necessary, to help his fellow Americans. In his address, the president said 2014 will be a “year of action.” And while the president said he will use executive orders if need be, he also showed he knows that true progress depends on cooperation with a divided and recalcitrant Congress.
- 2014 SOTU FULL TRANSCRIPT [via Washington Post]
During the more than an hour-long speech, the President echoed his calls from 2013 to recalibrate the tax code, spend more to rebuild roads and bridges, bolster education and avoid war if at all possible. But his underlying theme was his call for the government to work on behalf of all Americans in 2014, and his pledge to do so even if Congress refused to join him in an election year.
It’s an optimistic goal for a President with a 43 percent approval rating entering his sixth year, in office and facing a determined opposition in the Republican-led House of Representatives with congressional elections looming in November.
In response to the president’s address, local Congressman Tom Reed (R-Corning) released the following statement:
“More of the same out of Washington won’t help Southern Tier and Finger Lakes families. For this year to be any different we have to be realistic about our divided government, move forward on shared goals and address the top priority for Americans: jobs.
When I ask constituents at town halls what the issue is in the forefront of their minds, the answer is instant: jobs. Families are concerned about their well being and prospects for their children and grandchildren to find jobs in this economy. They need a government to listen and to care.
We can make jobs a priority without more Washington spending, red tape and mandates but we first must commit to working together to do so. The sectors we’re seeing poised for substantial job growth – sectors like manufacturing and domestic energy production – are the areas everyone on both sides of the aisle would do well to support.
I was pleased to hear the President talk about how growing manufacturing hubs, particularly growth as a result of my bipartisan Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act, would serve the country well.
I was likewise pleased to hear the President talk about what a game changer safe extraction of natural gas can be for our economy, transportation, and infrastructure. I hope that he goes beyond the rhetoric and puts his words into action for manufacturing, construction and energy jobs.
Between the rising premiums, cancelled health insurance policies and cut wages, I was also expecting to hear more from the President on ways to lessen the blow and help families struggling in very real ways under Obamacare. It was disappointing that the President failed to acknowledge that real problems are impacting workers, families and small businesses because of Obamacare.
At the end of the day, it’s the average taxpayer who is hurt most by mandates and poor policy coming out of Washington. At the end of the day, Americans need a job and a steady paycheck to support their families – and they are fairly asking their government to help make that possible. Surely we can all agree to come to the table and join forces for this fundamental task.”